History Track&Field

The History

The sport of track and field has its roots in human prehistory. Track and field-style events are among the oldest of all sporting competitions, as running, jumping and throwing are natural and universal forms of human physical expression. The first recorded examples of organized track and field events at a sports festival are the Ancient Olympic Games. At the first Games in 776 BC in Olympia, Greece, only one event was contested: the stadion footrace. The scope of the Games expanded in later years to include further running competitions, but the introduction of the Ancient Olympic pentathlon marked a step towards track and field as it is recognized today—it comprised a five-event competition of the long jump, javelin throw, discus throw, stadion footrace., and wrestling.
Track and field events were also present at the Panhellenic Games in Greece around this period, and they spread to Rome in Italy around 200 BC. After the period of Classical antiquity (in which the sport was largely Greco-Roman influenced) new track and field events began developing in parts of Northern Europe in the Middle Ages. The stone put and weight throw competitions popular among Celtic societies in Ireland and Scotland were precursors to the modern shot put and hammer throw events. One of the last track and field events to develop was the pole vault, which stemmed from competitions such as the Fierljeppen contests in the Northern European Lowlands in the 18th century.
Track and field is a sport which combines various athletic contests based on the skills of running, jumping, and throwing. The name is derived from the sport’s typical venue: a stadium with an oval running track enclosing a grass field where the throwing and jumping events take place.
The running events, which include sprints, middle and long-distance events, and hurdling, are won by the athlete with the fastest time. The jumping and throwing events are won by the athlete who achieves the greatest distance or height. Regular jumping events include long jump, triple jump, high jump and pole vault, while the most common throwing events are shot put, javelin, discus and hammer. There are also „combined events“, such as heptathlon and decathlon, in which athletes compete in a number of the above events. Most track and field events are individual sports with a single victor, but a number are relay races. Events are almost exclusively divided by gender, although both the men’s and women’s competitions are usually held at the same venue.
Track and field is categorised under the umbrella sport of athletics, which also includes road running, cross country running, and race walking. At the international level, the two most prestigious international track and field competitions are athletics competition at the Olympic Games and the IAAF World Championships in Athletics. The International Association of Athletics Federations is the international governing body.
Records are kept of the best performances in specific events, at world and national levels, right down to a personal level. However, if athletes are deemed to have violated the event’s rules or regulations, they are disqualified from the competition and their marks are erased.

In North America, the term track and field may be used to refer to other athletics events, such as the marathon, rather than strictly track-based events.
(Wikipedia)

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